Novartis wins two prestigious Prix Galien Foundation Awards

NovartisNovartis has been awarded the prestigious 2016 Prix Galien USA Award for Best Biotechnology Product for Cosentyx® (secukinumab), as well as the Prix Galien Foundation "Discovery of the Decade" Award for Best Pharmaceutical Product for the drug Gleevec® (imatinib mesylate). The awards were presented at a ceremony in New York City.

"We are honored to receive these prestigious awards for Cosentyx and Gleevec, which not only have changed the practice of medicine for certain conditions, but also represent years of hard work by our scientists," said Joseph Jimenez, CEO of Novartis. "These wins underscore our commitment to addressing the unmet medical needs of patients through science-based innovation."

Cosentyx was the first fully human interleukin-17A (IL-17A) antagonist approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2015 for the treatment of adults with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis[1]. Psoriasis affects an estimated 7.5 million people in the US[2]. It is a chronic immune-mediated disease characterized by thick and extensive skin lesions (plaques), which can cause itching, scaling, and pain[2]. Cosentyx was also approved for the treatment of active ankylosing spondylitis and psoriatic arthritis in 2016[1].

The discovery of Gleevec marked the first time in the history of cancer treatment that scientists were able to identify a chromosomal abnormality and then develop a drug that would target that specific protein. Gleevec, a molecularly targeted treatment, rapidly became a therapy of choice for Philadelphia chromosome-positive chronic myeloid leukemia (Ph+ CML) and KIT (CD117)-positive gastrointestinal stromal tumors (KIT+ GIST)[3]. By showing that certain diseases can share a drug-sensitive target with seemingly unrelated ailments, and that molecular targeting can be medically and commercially successful, Gleevec helped establish a new paradigm for drug development.

About the Prix Galien Awards
Considered "the pharmaceutical industry's Nobel Prize," the Prix Galien rewards excellence in scientific innovation that improves the state of human health. The award was first established in 1970 by French pharmacist Roland Mehl and was inaugurated in the United States in 2007 to recognize the technical, scientific and clinical research skills necessary to develop innovative medicines. Since 1970, Novartis has received more than 40 national Prix Galien awards in fifteen countries for innovative therapies such as Gleevec® (imatinib mesylate), Rimactane® (rifampin), Parlodel® (bromocriptine mesylate), Sandimmune® (cyclosporine), Sandostatin® (octreotide acetate), Simulect® (basiliximab) and Visudyne® (verteporfin)[4].

The "Discovery of the Decade" is a special once-in-10-years recognition for distinguished industry achievement in medical innovation. The awards honor extraordinary human health impact in three categories - Best Pharmaceutical Product, Best Biotechnology Product, and Best Medical Technology. In addition to Gleevec® (imatinib mesylate), two other Novartis products were nominated for "Discovery of the Decade," including Coartem® (artemether/ lumefantrine) for Best Pharmaceutical Product and Promacta® (eltrombopag olamine) for Best Biotechnology Product. Gleevec won the Prix Galien International Prize in 2002, and was recognized again in 2009 by the Prix Galien USA committee for "Best Pharmaceutical Product"[5].

About Cosentyx and interleukin-17A (IL-17A)
Cosentyx is a fully human monoclonal antibody (mAB) that selectively binds to the interleukin-17A (IL-17A) cytokine and inhibits its interaction with the IL-17 receptor[1].

Cosentyx is approved in more than 65 countries for the treatment of moderate to severe plaque psoriasis which includes the European Union countries, Japan, Switzerland, Australia, the U.S. and Canada[6]. In the U.S., Cosentyx is approved for the treatment of moderate to severe plaque psoriasis in adult patients who are candidates for systemic therapy or phototherapy (light therapy). Cosentyx is also approved in the US for adult patients with active ankylosing spondylitis and active psoriatic arthritis[1].

More than 10,000 patients have been treated with Cosentyx in clinical trial settings across multiple indications, and over 50,000 patients have been treated in the post-marketing setting worldwide[7].

About Gleevec (imatinib mesylate)
Gleevec® (imatinib mesylate) tablets are indicated for newly diagnosed adult patients with Philadelphia chromosome-positive chronic myeloid leukemia (Ph+ CML) in the chronic phase (CP). Gleevec is also indicated for the treatment of patients with Ph+ CML in blast crisis (BC), accelerated phase (AP), or in CP after failure of interferon-alpha therapy.

Additionally, Gleevec is indicated for Patients with KIT(CD117)-positive gastrointestinal stromal tumors (GIST) that cannot be surgically removed and/or have spread to other parts of the body and for adult patients after surgery who have had their KIT (CD117)-positive GIST completely removed.

About Novartis
Novartis provides innovative healthcare solutions that address the evolving needs of patients and societies. Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Novartis offers a diversified portfolio to best meet these needs: innovative medicines, eye care and cost-saving generic pharmaceuticals. Novartis is the only global company with leading positions in these areas. In 2015, the Group achieved net sales of USD 49.4 billion, while R&D throughout the Group amounted to approximately USD 8.9 billion (USD 8.7 billion excluding impairment and amortization charges). Novartis Group companies employ approximately 118,000 full-time-equivalent associates. Novartis products are available in more than 180 countries around the world.

1. Cosentyx (secukinumab) [prescribing information]. East Hanover, NJ: Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp, 2016.
2. National Psoriasis Foundation. Psoriasis fact sheet. https://www.psoriasis.org/sites/default/files/publications/PsoriasisFactSheet.pdf. Accessed February 29, 2016.
3. Gleevec® (imatinib mesylate) Prescribing Information. East Hanover, New Jersey: Novartis Pharma.
4. "Prix Galien - Winners Sorted by Company." Prix Galien Global Website. http://www.prixgalien.com/en/05/01/winners-sorted-by-company.htm. Last accessed October 2016.
5. "Prix Galien - Discovery of the Decade Candidates." Prix Galien Global Website. http://candidates.prix-galien-usa.com/docs/Discovery.pdf. Last accessed October 2016.
6. Novartis data on file. May 2016.
7. Novartis data on file. September 2016.

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